Nearly 75% of households in Nepal (4.03 million out of 5.42 million) still use solid biomass like fuel wood (64%) and animal dung for cooking, most of them without clean cookstoves. Additionally there are institutions like hotels, restaurants, schools, barracks and religious establishments where biomass is the main source of cooking fuel. Use of traditional technologies for burning the biomass creates heavy household air pollution besides posing fire and health hazards. Collection or processing of biomass results in drudgery, primarily for women and children. Firewood which is almost two-third of the biomass used without any clean cookstoves contributes greatly in deforestation and global warming as well.
Alternative Energy Promotion Centre (AEPC), from its inception in 1996 as focal agency of the Government of Nepal for promotion of renewable energy technologies in Nepal, has been successful in disseminating various clean and renewable energy, including cooking solutions in Nepal. This includes 1.3+ Million improved cook stoves (ICS), 400,000 biogas plants and around 600 solar cookers.
AEPC is executing a framework renewable energy program called National Rural & Renewable Energy Program (NRREP) . It is funded by the Government of Nepal and various external development partners and providing technical assistance for design and implementation of NRREP. Besides the national programs on Improved Cookstoves (ICS) and domestic biogas under AEPC, a number of other partners (e.g. SNV, WWF, Practical Actions, Swastha Chulo Nepal, South Asia EbA Project, WFP and CRT/N) are involved in designing and implementing regional or cluster level ICS and biogas programs under the NRREP framework.
On 20th January 2013, the government of Nepal has announced an ambitious mission of "Clean Cooking Solutions for All by 2017" (CCS4ALL), however due to various reasons the primarily set target for 2017 has become difficult to attain. Biomass Energy Strategy 2017 has been approved by Government of Nepal which has envisaged to attain the CCS4ALL goal by 2022. Along with this announcement, the government has requested all concerned stakeholders to support this mission. The stakeholders recognize that achievement of this mission requires stronger joint collaboration.
AEPC recognizes the effort of stakeholders engaged in clean cooking solutions and their request for more coordination in this sub-sector. After three rounds of discussion with major stakeholders, it has been agreed that such coordination requires a platform, hosted by AEPC in the form of a national alliance. Consequently, a small task force comprising of AEPC, private sector and development partner have worked towards preparing this brief concept note for declaring the formation of national alliance, Nepal Alliance for Clean Cookstoves (NACC), on 10th July 2013.